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Author Topic: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?  (Read 1900 times)

Offline Special T

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2019, 12:19:41 PM »
I like still hunting during the weather, or sitting on a stand near folks homes with the bow. I see most of the deer near people homes. Bows make permission acquisition easier and dont disturb the neighbors

Byod Iverson Blacktail Trophy tactics. It Almost the Blacktail Bible
In archery we have something like the way of the superior man. When the archer misses the center of the target, he turns round and seeks for the cause of his failure in himself. 

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Offline The Marquis

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #16 on: January 11, 2019, 01:35:57 PM »
If you are to read everything there is to read on Blacktail hunting, and if you were to pick one tidbit of information about which method is the best, you'd learn that it really doesn't matter which method is used, you just need to find them.  They are very hard to find, yet somewhat abundant in number.  You can wait at clear cuts all day, you can still hunt, road hunt, etc etc etc.  Old growth, reprod, your grandma's backyard... Everything seems to work. 

Depending on your patience for being around other hunters, clear cuts may or may not be for you, the remaining methods for hunting deer will likely work for you if you approach a sea of orange at a clear cut and it makes you extremely uneasy.  I'm guessing that's probably not a concern for you as I recall you mentioning you come from the mid-west and hunted public land.  Do what you enjoy most, you'll probably have as much success as anybody else doing it any other way.

Offline fishnfur

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2019, 12:12:26 PM »
Most popular:  Get in the biggest, loudest diesel you can find.  Cram everyone inside dressed in full camo with orange on.  Drive the roads at 4 mph, don't let anyone pass you.  Blare that Jason Aldean music.  Stop every 20 minutes to take a pee break at a landing, and scope everything around.  Maybe fire a few shots to check your gun.  Move another twelve cans of beer from the bed to the cab and head for the next landing.

Awesome!   :chuckle: :chuckle:    If spear hunting was allowed, those boys would surely have a few of them in the truck too.

I took your question regarding methods to mean the types of guns/weapons used.  I'd agree that you've got to read the regs.  They appear convoluted on the first few readings, but by the 5th or so time through them, you'll have a pretty good feel for what is legal and what is not. 

To my knowledge, and off the top of my head, deer hunting is legal with handguns that meet minimum caliber and barrel length, bows that generate at least 40 lbs of draw weight, crossbows in specific situations, shotguns, muzzleloaders, and rimfire rifles (greater than 25 cal ? ?).   I'm sure there's a mistake or two in there, so read the regs.

“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Offline fishnfur

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2019, 12:40:27 PM »
Glassing clearcuts is a productive method, but I usually do that first thing in the morning and the last hour before dark.  Then I like to still hunt adjoining timber patches.  This involves SLOWLY making your way through the woods, stopping often to look and listen. Shots will usually be 50 yards or less.  Sometimes if I find a good opening/view point, I'll just sit and watch for a while.

When I was young and learning to hunt, we never hunted clearcuts. We hunted the timber in Capitol Forest. My dad and uncles grew up in the Mox Chehalis valley, and knew every ridge and canyon and how they all connected and where the choke points were. We made drives, usually with one or two people on stands but not always.  On these drives we'd hunt similarly to still hunting, except you'd move a little faster and being perfectly quiet wasn't necessary. The purpose wasn't so much to sneak up on a deer to get a shot, but to get them moving.  Blacktail like to double back on you. So if you jumped one, there was a good chance he'd run into one of your partners trying to circle back on you.  Some times if we knew we moved deer around, we'd turn around and hunt back the same way we had just come and get deer on the second passage. Dad and the uncles had hunted those woods for so long, they knew where deer would go when pushed which was invaluable when putting people on stands. And often we'd do multiple drives during the day to get deer moved to certain areas And then do a drive through a canyon where we figured the deer may have piled up.  Our drives consisted of anywhere between two people and eight was probably the largest. Four or five was probably the most common.  Sometimes we'd have two different drives going on with plans to meet at a third location and all hunt there together.  we would often get multiple deer on one drive.  Not many people hunt that way any more, but it was very common in the 50s, 60,s and 70s in that area.  Lots of large families hunting together. And from down on the family ranch, you'd hear shooting all day long.  I started hunting at 10, and it wasn't until I was 18 that I was introduced to hunting clearcuts. Before that, it was always in the timber.

Nice post SB!  Those were the Golden Days of BT hunting in the NW.  I wish I had seen some of that action.  That was back before all the regulation changes in logging, which now require immediate replanting of seedlings at 300 trees per acre.  Back then, the clearcuts took a very long time to get through the brushy stages and deer production was maxed out with fresh browse everywhere.  No cable TV, no cell phones, no computers, no online gaming.  Only work and play.  "Hey honey, get the kids!  We're going hunting!".   :tup:
“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Offline Alan K

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2019, 01:12:38 PM »
Drives still work great. Just aren't many folks who deer hunt in groups large enough to make them work. Nowadays its a lot of pushing reprod and brush thickets versus timber. DNR is about the only timber manager that has long rotation ages anymore.



Offline Parasite

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #20 on: January 13, 2019, 12:45:08 AM »
7mmfan … you mention the rut. That was going to be my next question. When is the approximate pre-rut, peak rut, and post rut for blacktails in this state? Does is mirror the whitetail rut?

Alan K ... you mention "reprod". I've read/heard that term a few times now, but I don't know what that is. Slang for something I assume? Google was not my friend on that term. So what is reprod?

The Marquis … unfortunately I won't get to hunt here like I did the Midwest and will have to figure something else out, hence the questions. My weapon of choice is the crossbow and I like to hunt farm country. My crossbow is not legal for me here, and I'm not seeing much in the way of farmland here around Olympia. Now I have hunted big timber up in Michigan in my youth so I know what to expect, it's just not my favorite … at least for whitetail. I'll figure something out. I'd read the books people are suggesting IF I really wanted to get into chasing blacktails, but I don't plan on going after them much at this time. I just want to plan for one and done unless I get bitten by the bug. The real draw of moving out west is for elk, plus applying for the other big game species and maybe, just maybe, getting lucky and drawing a tag.


Offline fishnfur

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #21 on: January 13, 2019, 01:20:32 AM »
I can try a couple of those:

Reprod = reproduction timber.  Clearcut forest replanted, with the trees anywhere from 1 - 30 year old.  The reprod we typically speak of is the stuff that is Christmas tree size and anywhere from 4 to 10 years old - big enough to provide food and cover for deer during the daylight.  Once the fir gets big enough to touch adjacent trees on all sides, the canopy stops sunlight from hitting the ground and the food stops growing.  It can still be great cover for deer even if there's not much food in there.  A quick check of Google Earth in your area will display the different stages of reprod found in most commercial forest areas thoughout Western WA.

Rut - varies from region to region.  Pre-rut really seems to get going around mid-Oct.  Some areas have breeding pairs as early as the 20th of October and we see pretty consistent reports of chasing from that point on through the end of the month.  Peak of the rut, when the majority of successful breeding takes place tends to be sometime around the second week of Nov.  Second/third estrus cycles have bucks moving until early December.  It dwindles down after that.
“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Offline Martinhunter

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #22 on: January 13, 2019, 03:23:28 AM »
If rifle hunten, be in the woods the last few days of October all day long and cover as much ground hiking not driving and you'll almost certainly find a buck chasing a doe.. If no luck then same tactic the 4 days during late buck....
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Offline 7mmfan

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #23 on: January 13, 2019, 08:18:44 AM »
Fishnfur did a pretty good job of breaking those points down. Pre rut definitely is taking place when the season opens mid October. I've seen some pretty intense rut activity as early as the 15th, but that's rare. You'll start noticing fresh rubs around the 20th, and by Halloween it's happening. If you have time to read past posts, including a couple of mine, many many bucks are killed the last couple days of October hot on the heels of does.

Your area further south than me has the late modern season, usually around November 17-20. I believe WDFW stats show over half, if not more,  of the annual harvest of BT bucks happens in that 4 day season. That is coming down off peak rut and the bucks are cruising looking for unbred does.
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Offline Special T

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #24 on: January 13, 2019, 09:29:50 AM »
You can use your crossbow during modern firearm(rifle) season. Actually a popular weapon in firearm restricted zones.

I know guys that bow hunt the modern rifle season due to the season being closer to/during the rut.

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In archery we have something like the way of the superior man. When the archer misses the center of the target, he turns round and seeks for the cause of his failure in himself. 

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Offline blackveltbowhunter

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #25 on: January 13, 2019, 05:28:58 PM »
https://hunting-washington.com/smf/index.php/topic,231581.0.html

   Try this thread. Lots of good insight, discusssion and great posts, was possibly my favorite thread of 2018 here :tup:

Another resource I have found enjoyable is the Blacktail Deer Hunting How To app. They have a FB page and its a subscription app, with lots of good advice at least for a introduction into BT hunting. Alot of it may not pertain to tree farms but its good information.

   The majority of deer hunting is done on timber farms so my post is catered to my observations in that environment. If planning to hunt mountain bucks outside of those areas then I would brush up on a different set of skills.

   Clearcuts are the grocery store for the majority of BT. Like a cropfield for whitetails. So don't expect to see alot of deer in them open in daylight. Especially branched bucks.  Night movement is the name of the game except early and late, and sometimes the rut. Even then savvy older bucks ( and the deer population in general ) will use routes with heavy cover or inside the edges of thicker trees or forest. Bedding areas are generally within several hundred yards of feeding and deer may bed in the clearcut itself if age and cover allow, although outside of the rut I see very few bigger bucks bedding in younger cuts during daylight.

   TImber and the older reprod are typical bedding areas.

   I have found BT in this environement to be very difficult to lay down a pattern on. Primary food sources end up changing considerably from late August to Dec, and in their environment pin pointing what that food is can be difficult. Combined with bucks moving during Rut and depending on elevation possible snow and weather moving deer targeting a specific animal can be a daunting task. In more urban environments this becomes significantly easier as the area that will hold a big deer becomes alot smaller, however pre season door knocking and permission access is going to be vital to success in that situation.

    Most hunters I know, myself included tend to hunt over or near does, waiting for a buck to cruise in during the last week of October or the late season in November when rut activity during season is typically at its best. This is during gun season which usually has the best rut activity. How to hunt over the does is really where the different tactics come into play. Like 7MM mentioned lots of guys cover as much ground as possible glassing areas that are condicive to it looking for deer on their feet. Very popular strategy in any areas with a road system that is conducive to it.  Others hunt stands over does in areas with a smaller footprint. Or still hunt.

   I will echo the sentiment of many on here hunt when the weather is rainy and cool. I time my hunts based on weather Rather than the timing of the season for the most part. Later is generally better, But I would rather have a rainy, cool, nasty day on the 23rd of October than a bluebird high 50's on Halloween.

Offline Parasite

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #26 on: January 14, 2019, 12:20:43 AM »
Does that Blacktail Deer Hunting How To app cover the aforementioned diesel method? LOL

Thanks for the help. I'll peruse that link here shortly.

Offline Pete112288

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Re: So what methods and techniques are used to take blacktails here?
« Reply #27 on: January 14, 2019, 02:10:56 AM »
I can back up just about everything said here. The 2 biggest points that have been covered in my opinion are the hunting during nasty weather and move SLOWLY, then when you think you are moving painfully slow, go slower.
A couple other methods of hunting that I really like are...
Do research and find pinhole type areas surrounded by homes, city limits, highways, large bodies of water, etc. I have hunted areas of thousands of acres of open land vs little pinhole areas down to 20 acres. I like to try and find little hidden pockets of public land that its likely that others dont know about. Esp around urban areas it leads to... less educated deer, or maybe a better way to put it, people conditioned deer. And these areas are easy to cover the whole area or sit and watch. This years buck just watched me and expected me to walk right by in open trees at 12 yards. Didnt even twitch as I missed the first 2 shots (was hell bent on getting him with the revolver but my excitement got the better of my ability to hold steady) then it finally stood up, looked annoyed and started walking off, then I brought up the shotgun and it was lights out. Now, that doesent happen all the time in these areas, but it makes it a little more forgiving if your a little noisy or make a few mistakes here and there in moving through an area. I have 4 specific spots, that according to my trail cams being there for years, that I know I could kill a buck if I just forced myself to have the patience to sit in my treestand all day. I am just not always that patient. I can move super slow if need be, but something about sitting all day, thats my biggest challenge. One of these days I swear I will manage it.
As said alread Boyd Iversons book is great. Also, the one that opened my eyes to a lot was Scott Haugen's book on Blacktail Trophy Tactics.
Also as said before, rattling can work. Success varies a lot on circumstances and luck. As my luck would have it, the second time I ever tried it I got a nice buck because of it. A doe came in to check things out, all alert and looking for where the action was, she was nuts trying to see everything and looking everywhere, then a buck was on her heels. Since then I have tried it probably 60+ times without a thing to show. But because of my early success with it, I keep at it. It only takes once for it to work and its been worth it.

 


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